The use of counterpropagating laser pulses to suppress high harmonic generation (HHG) is investigated experimentally for pulses polarized parallel or perpendicular to the driving laser pulse. It is shown for the first time that perpendicularly polarized pulses can suppress HHG. The intensity of the counterpropagating pulse required for harmonic suppression is found to be much larger for perpendicular polarization than for parallel polarization, in good agreement with simple models of the harmonic suppression. These results have applications to quasi-phase-matching of HHG with trains of counterpropagating pulses.
© 2007 Optical Society of America
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